Metrics: Estimating Personal and Organizational Resilience

Various methods are being used to measure general resilience. These are some of the most popular and evidence-based.

Given the importance of resilience, it is not surprising there are various methodologies to measure it. One source has curated the most popular and evidence-based of these methods.

1. Connor-Davidson Resilience Scale (CD-RISC)

A study conducted by Windle, Bennett, & Noyes (2011) reviewed nineteen resilience measures. However, out of nineteen, only three of them received superior psychometric ratings, one of which is the Connor-Davidson Resilience Scale (CD-RISC).

This scale was originally developed by Connor-Davidson (2003) as a self-report measure of resilience within the Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) clinical community (CD-RISC, n.d.). It is validated and widely recognized scale with 2, 10, and 25 items which measure resilience as a function of five interrelated components:

  1. Personal Competence
  2. Acceptance of Changeand Secure Relationships
  3. Trust/Tolerance/Strengthening Effects of Stress
  4. Control
  5. Spiritual Influences

With an extensive number of studies using this tool, conducted within a varied range of populations, the CD-RISC is considered one of the higher scoring scales in the psychometric evaluation of resilience (Windle, Bennett, & Noyes, 2011).

2) Resilience Scale for Adults (RSA)

The RSA, another scale rated highly by Windle, Bennett, & Noyes (2011), was authored by Friborg et al. (2003) as a self-report scale targeting adults. This scale has five scoring items which examine both the intrapersonal and interpersonal protective factors that promote adaptation to adversity.

They are:

  • Personal Competence
  • Social Competence
  • Social Support
  • Family Coherence
  • Personal Structure

A later study performed by Friborg et al. (2005) used the RSA to measure the relationship between personality, intelligence, and resilience. They found many links between personality and resilience factors, such as the connection between higher personal competence and elevated emotional stability. There were, however, no significant findings related to cognitive ability (Friborg et al., 2005).

3) Brief Resilience Scale

While most resilience assessments look into the factors which develop resilience, The Brief Resilience Scale (BRS) is a self-rating questionnaire aimed at measuring an individuals’ ability to “bounce back from stress”. This instrument, developed by Smith et al. (2008), has not been used in the clinical population. however, it could provide some key insights for individuals with health-related stress (Smith, et al., 2008).

4) Resilience Scale

This scale is the oldest scale in our list, but is still in use by many researchers. The Resilience Scale, developed by Wagnild and Young in 1993, was created and validated with a sample of older adults (aged 53 to 95 years). This scale consists of 25 items and the results have been found to positively correlate with physical health, morale, and life satisfaction, while negatively correlating with depression.

The scale is intended to measure resilience based on five essential characteristics:

  1. Meaningful Life (or Purpose)
  2. Perseverance
  3. Self-Reliance
  4. Equanimity
  5. Existential Aloneness

These five characteristics are assessed using two subscales, the 17-item Personal Competence subscale and the 8-item Acceptance of Self and Life subscale.

Subsequent validation of the scale in 2009 by Wagnild reaffirmed its internal consistency and construct validity, supporting its continued effectiveness as a tool for the assessment of resilience.

5) Scale of Protective Factors (SPF)

The Scale of Protective Factors (SPF) was developed by Ponce-Garcia, Madwell, and Kennison in 2015 to capture a comprehensive measurement of resilience. The authors tested and validated this scale in a sample of nearly 1,000 college students, and found the SPF to be a valid and reliable measure of resilience for measuring resilience, especially in groups identified as survivors of violent trauma.

The SPF has since been validated in a review of resilience scales by Madewell and Ponce-Garcia (2016), providing evidence of its validity and effectiveness in clinical use.

6) Predictive 6-Factor Resilience Scale

The Predictive 6-Factor Resilience Scale was developed based on the neurobiological underpinnings of resilience and the theorized relationship with health hygiene factors (Roussouw & Roussouw, 2016).

The PR6 measures resilience as a function of six domains concerning several interrelated concepts:

  • Vision:self-efficacy and goal-setting
  • Composure:emotional regulation and ability to identify, understand, and act on internal prompts and physical signals
  • Tenacity:perseverance and hardiness
  • Reasoning:higher cognitive traits, like problem-solving, resourcefulness, and thriving
  • Collaboration:psychosocial interaction, such as secure attachment, support networks, context, and humor Health: physiological health

The PR6 was found to have good internal consistency and correlate with other measures of resilience as well as health hygiene scores.

Based on these results, the PR6 can be considered an effective measurement and a particularly good assessment for use in improving resilience.

7) Ego Resilience Scale

This scale was developed by Block and Kremen in 1996 for use in measuring resilience in non-psychiatric contexts. While the authors term their construct “ego resiliency,” it is basically resilience as we know it viewed in terms of adaptability to changes in one’s circumstances.

The Resilience Scale (RS-14) consists of 14 items rated on a scale from 1 = does not apply to 4 = applies very strongly, with higher scores indicating higher levels of resilience.

Scores on this scale have been found to positively correlate with intelligence as it relates to the ability to adapt, supporting the scale’s ability to assess an individual’s ability to bounce back from failure and disappointment.

8) Academic Resilience Scale (ARS-30)

The Academic Resilience Scale (ARS-30) is a recently developed measure used to assess resilience in a particular context: academic success.

9) The Post-Traumatic Growth Inventory (PTGI)

First introduced by Richard Tedeschi and Lawrence Calhoun is the Post-Traumatic Growth Inventory. 1996). It measures positive responses in five areas, especially in the domain of trauma:

  • Appreciation of life.
  • Relationships with others.
  • New possibilities in life.
  • Personal strength.
  • Spiritual change.

10) Professional Quality of Life Scale (ProQOL)

The ProQOL focuses on encouraging and measuring enhanced professional quality of life with the goal of identifying key factors that prevent or ameliorate the negative effects of caregiving and buttress the positive effects of providing care.

11) American Psychological Association has published a list of 10 resilience-enhancing behaviors that can be tracked and measured

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